Sculptor “Unzips” a Building in Milan for Mind-Bending Art Installation | My Modern Met

By Jessica Stewart on April 10, 2019

An a”peel”ing display of art + architecture.

British sculptor Alex Chinneck has brought his mind-bending illusions to Italy with an incredible installation in Milan. Concurrently with Milan Design Week, Chinneck has literally unzipped the facade of a building in the city in what he calls the most ambitious work he’s ever made. In addition to the incredible exterior, the building’s interior is also filled with several installations that carry through the zipper theme, making for a cohesive and immersive experience.

In collaboration with Philip Morris’ IQOS brand, Chinneck worked to playfully transform the building’s architecture. Using the chunky masonry that is typical of Italian architecture, Chinneck created the zipper and “peeled” back a layer of the building to reveal a glowing light that alternates between white and blue.

“I like to give fluidity to typically inflexible things, transcending their material nature,” Chinneck told My Modern Met in 2018. This statement clearly still holds true, as his studio (working with engineers and illustrators) was once again able to manipulate our expectations. While he hasn’t revealed precisely how he was able to peel back the 56-foot (17-meter) wide facade, in the past a composite of cement and flexible materials have helped him create his illusions. […]

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